We had the good fortune of connecting with Zaria Hall and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Zaria, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I always knew I wanted to have a career in the arts. I fell in love with the arts at a young age. I began taking piano lessons at the age of 4, singing at the age of 9, playing viola at the age of 11, creating visual art pieces at the age of 12, songwriting and composing at the age of 13, and diving headfirst into the world of theatre at the age of 14. I was good at math, but I always knew that art, specifically music, was my purpose. I went to Alabama State University and received my degree in Theatre Arts, but my love, my drive, and my passion was and is music. It’s what I wake up thinking about. It makes me happy. It frustrates me. It excites me. It’s one of my necessities, therefore I had no choice but to pursue it.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a multi-hyphenate talent: a singer, songwriter, pianist, actress and visual artist. I’ve been heavily impacted by multiple musical genres such as jazz, hip-hop, soul, RnB, and classical, that I’ve mixed all of those genres into my music. I have possessed a deep love for music since I was a child. I studied the piano classically from age four to sixteen and I have spent the majority of my life composing records, singing in the choir as well as performing in recitals, talent shows and the theater. What sets me apart from others is not only the ability to write and sing original songs that discuss real and raw topics, but also my extensive theatre background. My history in the theater has taught me how to effectively communicate with my audience. It has allowed me to speak to the minds, hearts, and souls of my listeners. Relating to my listeners makes me the most proud. It makes me feel like I’m telling them “you are not alone”. I am where I am because of the people that surround me: my family, teachers, church, friends, advisors. They’re constant encouragement has pushed me and elevated me to where I am now and where I am going. Hell no this is not easy. The constant grind is not for the weak. Hollywood has made the entertainment and music industry look so glamorous, but they’ve never shown the rejection side of it. It’s all apart of the game though. The way I overcome it is by listening to music oddly; it refuels me. It reminds me of why I’m continuing to fight even after receiving a thousand “no’s”. I want the world to know that I write music with people like me in mind. My music provokes emotions, allowing listeners to purge their feelings. I want to use my gifts as an instrument to heal others.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
To be honest if my friends were visiting Atlanta, they’d probably show me spots and take me places I’ve never been before. But if it was all up to me, on Monday, I’d take them to Gallery 992 off Abernathy for Music Mondays (it’s a raw and magical vibe). On Tuesday, I’d take them to Cafe Intermezzo, so we can feel like we’re living lavishly and then we’d go to House of Hookah because I guess girls love hookah. On Wednesday, we’d go to Apache to sip a little drink and listen to the talented, underground artists Atlanta has to offer. On Thursday, we’d go to Paradise Lounge in Roswell and see Trap Jazz All-stars and let them amaze us with their musical renditions of popular trap songs. After that, we’d hit up Traffik Kitchen and Cocktails. On Friday, my friends would have to leave me at the house so I can rest and refuel and then on Saturday, we’d go to whatever festival is happening either at Centennial or The Marietta Square. Saturday night, we’d go to VVS off Old National and then on Sunday, we’d spend the whole day at Six Flags.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I absolutely want to shoutout a number of people. First and foremost, God. Of course, without God nothing is possible- my gifts, my drive, my purpose, my abilities, nothing. I’d like to express my huge love and gratitude for my parents, Delores and Walter Hall. They allowed me to explore everything I’ve ever wanted to explore. They put me in and financed all of my lessons (piano, art, theatre, tennis, etc.) and without them, I wouldn’t be who I am today… literally. I’d like to shoutout my second mom and piano instructor Beverly Lafleur. She was placed in my life to open the entire world of art up to me and I am greatly appreciative of her for that. I want to shoutout my sister, niece, grandma, aunties, and uncles for always supporting me, encouraging me, and hyping me up. Shoutout to my Turner Chapel A.M.E. family, Alabama State University family, Maestro Media ATL family, PMSC family, and my Beta Eta Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. sisters. Last, but not least, thank you to everyone that has supported my music. Thus far, I have had a huge out pour of love from people all over the world- strangers and friends. This is who and what I do what I do for. Thank you so much.
Destiny D. Williams Ravann A. Guyton